What’s Involved in Processing a Payroll?

The challenges of in-house payroll management.

If you run a small to medium sized firm, you’ll know the challenges of business management take many forms. First, there’s the likelihood that you’re managing all areas of your company on top of your day-to-day client facing work. The cost of employing dedicated staff for specialised back office tasks such as your payroll and pensions can be prohibitive in terms of recruitment, training, salary, software and office space fees. Continued financial pressures on the economy mean that many businesses struggle to meet the ongoing commitment to direct and indirect costs of HR or administrative personnel employment.

In the long term, performing everything single-handedly distracts you from your core role; new business development, for instance. That said, it’s essential to keep on top of your payroll. After all, at the end of each month, your employees have to get paid.

However, you may lack the time and expertise to do the task justice. On a standalone basis, payroll management can be a full time job, covering salary processing, SMP, SPP, PAYE  and pension payments, payslip production, in-year and year-end reporting, as stipulated by ever-changing HMRC legislation. A heavier workload resulting from the introduction of auto enrolment pensions stringently regulated by The Pensions Regulator and, suddenly, the role assumes unmanageable proportions.

That’s where outsourcing can help, to ease your workload, leaving you free to concentrate on other business critical functions, without the exorbitant initial outlay, ongoing overheads and constant worry associated with employing in-house people.

How does outsourcing work?

Outsourcing is the process whereby you contract an existing business function externally to an independent supplier, purchased as a service, thus ceasing to perform the function internally.

As experts in all things payroll and pensions, our virtual payroll services are a way of alleviating the burden of this heavily regulated back office function. To help you understand how our outsourced service works, here’s a simplified 4-step process to outsourcing your payroll to us:-

1. Recruitment

We recruit high calibre payroll clerks – many of whom are Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals-accredited – from personal recommendations, select agencies and direct applications. Our recruitment procedure is rigorous and all references are taken up prior to the start of their employment.

Any newly appointed clerks work hand-in-hand with experienced team members to tap into their extensive knowledge of payroll, pensions and rewards, thereby developing their own skills at the same time.

2. Induction

Successful candidates undergo an intensive 4-week induction period where they learn to use our software, understand procedures and ensure they meet our very high standards.

Like everyone at Quill, our payroll clerks follow a continuous personal and professional development programme. We strongly advocate staff development and have a competency framework in place to help identify specific training and mentoring needs.

Our employees feel valued by the investment we make in developing their skills which greatly improves their career progression opportunities, both inside and outside the company. Our Best Companies accreditation is acknowledgement of our commitment to progressing and harnessing the talents of our staff.

3. Assigned clerk

You’re assigned a named clerk from our payroll bureau with supervisor, escalation procedures and absence cover arrangements.

With primary concentration on the personal client-clerk relationship, our employees develop a close one-to-one relationship with you, effectively operating as an extension to your business. This is good for you as it provides always-available, friendly assistance.

It’s good for our clerks too, because they have a wealth of knowledge around them to use as a sounding board for any issues encountered. They also have holiday and sickness cover, making the return to work from any leave of absence much more manageable.

4. Full payroll management

Your dedicated payroll clerk then undertakes all aspects of payroll right down to transferring money from your business bank account directly into your staff’s bank accounts to pay their salaries. That’s because we’re a Bacs approved supplier.

The whole set up is closely monitored by a hands-on senior management team for guaranteed accuracy, improved operational control and on-time payments.

What are the benefits of outsourcing?

To put it succinctly, the advantages gained from outsourcing your payroll, particularly by small businesses, are numerous and can help secure the future of your business.

You don’t have the responsibility of handing your own payroll, and salary and auto enrolment pension payments which saves time, allowing you the freedom to focus on your core activity and business development to achieve higher profits.

Equally important to your bottom line, there are significant financial savings of an outsourced as opposed to in-house structure, with lower manpower requirements, and accompanying IT infrastructure and software. Our flat monthly fee will make a huge impact, positively, on your profit margins.

In saying all this, we recognise that change is difficult but the negative effects of not changing can be extremely detrimental, especially if the traditional in-house approach to payroll management is causing difficulties for you.

We provide a safe, regulatory-compliant, cost-effective framework. Find out more on how our payroll outsourcing service is helping businesses just like yours to operate and flourish commercially.